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Lecture 11

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BIOL 359
Jonathan Witt

Lecture 1: Intelligent Design Theory:  An alternative scientific theory to explain origins complexity o Holds that the biological complexity apparent in nature and emergence of highly complex forms cannot be explained by Darwinian evolution and is consistent with intelligent design o Heavily promoted by the Discovery Institute and Center for Cultural Renewal as; a scientific alternative to Darwinian Evolution  Intelligent design takes to court: o Debate of teaching evolution in U.S public schools was taken to federal court o Dover Area School District was to start defending its policy on Monday of requiring ninth grade students to hear about intelligent design before biology lessons on evolution o First U.S school system to require students to be exposed to the concept o Critics: intelligent design is merely a creationism ( a literal reading of bible’s story of creation and camouflaged in scientific language and does not belong in science curriculum. • Eight dover families are suing school district, alleging that the policy violates the constitutional separation of church and state. o In design vs Darwinism, Darwin Wins Points in ROME • A judge in Pennsylvania declared that the Intelligent design should not be taught as a scientific alternative to evolution o A recent Pennsylvania court case pitting religious school board members who ordered that ‘Intelligent Design Theory’ be included in science classes, against parents who argued that the order violated the establishment clause of the first amendment of the US constitution: Separation of Church and State. o School Board Position: A disclaimer must be read in science class: darwin’s Theory of Evolution is not a fact and has inexplicable gaps • Students were directed the book: of Pandas of People  ID document promoted by religious groups of UW to be adopted as a Supplemental Biology Text  BUSH: “I think part of education is to expose people to different schools of thought” o Is intelligent design theory a scientific theory: Does Intelligent Design Theory belong in Science Class Curriculum • Science: From National Class Academy  As a fact : is an observation that has been repeatedly confirmed and for all practical purposes is accepted as “true” • Truth in science, is never FINAL, and what s accepted as a fact today may be modified or even discarded tomorrow  A scientific hypothesis: a tentative (uncertain) statement about the natural world leading to deductions( assumptions) or predicions that can be tested. • If deductions are verified it becomes more probable that the hypothesis is correct • If deductions are incorrect, the original hypothesis is abandoned or modified  As a Law: • A descriptive generalization about how some aspect of the natural world behaves under specified circumstance’s • E.g ; second law of thermodynamics  Goal of Science: • In science a well substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world that incorporates facts, laws, and tested hypotheses • Key element: must be falsifiable ( cant argue) and internally consistent  History of ID o How was it discovered:  William Paley, 1802, proposed , Natural Theology: Evidences of the Existence and Attributes of the Deity, collected from the Appearances of Nature • If there was a watch, there was a watch maker, if there is an eye, there was an eye maker (creator or designer) o The Discovery Institute and Center for Cultural Renewal, Seattle WA o Michael Behe; Discovery Institute Senior Fellow and Author of Darwin’s Black Box; the biochemic
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